Raspberry Leaf - Featured Herb


With a silvery underleaf that is reminiscent of the moon's glow, raspberry leaf has been used by European and Native American women for thousands of years for menstrual support, menstrual cramps and during pregnancy as a healthy tonic to help prepare the womb for childbirth. The therapeutic use of raspberry leaf was first described in 1597 in a book called "The Herbal," or "A General History of Plants." Today, red raspberry leaf and fruit are still used as medicine.

Raspberry leaves gathered in spring before the plant flowers have the highest antioxidant content.

Health Benefits of Raspberry Leaf

Raspberry leaf tea has been used for centuries as a folk medicine to treat canker sores, cold sores, and gingivitis in persons of all ages and anemia, leg cramps, diarrhea, and morning sickness in pregnant women, and as a uterine relaxant.

It is naturally high in magnesium, potassium, iron and B-vitamins which make it helpful for nausea, leg cramps and improving sleep during pregnancy. The specific combination of nutrients in Raspberry Leaf makes it extremely beneficial for the female reproductive system. It strengthens the uterus and pelvic muscles which some midwives say leads to shorter and easier labors.

The tannins in raspberry leaf give it astringent properties which make it soothing both internally and externally. A strong raspberry leaf tea or tincture will sooth sunburn, eczema and rashes when used externally. Swishing with a tincture or infusion of Raspberry Leaf is great for the gums and can help alleviate the symptoms of gingivitis or gum disease.

The high concentration of Vitamin C in Raspberry Leaf makes it great during illness and some people also use it as a base for homemade energy drinks.

It is somewhat well known for its benefits during pregnancy, but it is beneficial to women at all stages of life.

  1. Red raspberry leaf is used for gastrointestinal (GI) tract disorders, including diarrhea
  2. for respiratory system disorders, including flu and swine flu
  3. for heart problems, fever, diabetes, and vitamin deficiency.
  4. It is also used to promote sweating, urination, and bile production. Some people use it for general "purification of skin and blood."
  5. Some women use raspberry leaf for painful periods or heavy periods. It supports healthy menstruation, tones the uterus and may be used for menstrual cramps.
  6. It can be used to alleviate morning sickness associated with pregnancy, preventing miscarriage and easing labor and delivery.
  7. Red raspberry leaf is applied directly to the skin for sore throat and skin rash.

Uses of Raspberry Leaf

Raspberry Leaf can be brewed as a herbal tea which can be drunk hot in the winter and iced in the summer. It has a gentle taste very similar to regular tea without the caffeine, which makes it wonderful in the evening. If you're a tea drinker, consider adding this in place of regular tea. Many herbal teas include raspberry to "stabilize" the other ingredients. It may also be taken as a capsule, though rare.
  1. Tea. To make raspberry leaf tea, pour 1 cup (240 ml) of boiling water over 1 or 2 teaspoons (3-5 grams) of dried leaf. Close the teapot and allow to stand for 10 minutes, then sweeten to taste. During pregnancy, drink 2 to 3 cups daily. Drink warm.

    For a stronger tea, use up to 1 tablespoon of raspberry leaf to 1 cup of boiling water.

  2. To make a gallon of raspberry leaf tea, just add 3/4 to 1 cup of Raspberry Leaf per gallon of boiling water.
  3. A pregnancy tea can be made using 4 parts Raspberry Leaf and 1 part Nettle Leaf.
  4. You can also add 1 part Peppermint Leaf for help with nausea during early pregnancy.
  5. You can also make a tincture of raspberry leaf using the same proportions that you use to make chamomile tincture and it is great for the skin if used externally and as a more concentrated form to help alleviate PMS, menstrual troubles, heavy bleeding and infertility when used internally.

Raspberry Tincture

Ingredients
Instructions

References

  1. http://www.mountainroseherbs.com/learn/raspberry_leaf.php
  2. http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-309-RED%20RASPBERRY.aspx?activeIngredientId=309&activeIngredientName=RED%20RASPBERRY
  3. http://www.traditionalmedicinals.com/product/raspberry-leaf
  4. http://wellnessmama.com/5107/herb-profileraspberry-leaf/